Continued Good News

We are several days out from our trip and things are continuing to go well. We're on the tired side, but that's normal after having gone away, but nothing worse than tired.

By nothing worse, I mean that K hasn't gone into a spin from visiting with her family. She's made it to work all week and hasn't had any symptoms of dysphoric mania or depression. We managed to cook on Monday and had leftovers Tuesday, but last night we went out to dinner with a friend instead of cooking. We're frequently tempted to go out rather than deal with dinner at home, but we usually fight the urge.

Tonight, we have dinner guests, and I've already picked up two huge steaks for the grill. No temptation to go out tonight.

I frequently write about the little things, such as whether we had the energy to cook or not, and I know it isn't the most interesting. But it is those things, which act as the bellwether to our mental state.

One flare-up did occur this week. An opportunity arose at my work to go out in the field doing emergency work for 2-3 weeks. The conditions would have been fairly nasty, and it certainly isn't work I want to perform on a regular basis, but it sounded interesting.

K wouldn't really even discuss it. She flatly refused to consider my leaving for that period of time. Initially, when we discussed it via e-mail, she gave the house renovations as the reason that I shouldn't leave. Then, at home, when I pushed, she finally came out with her health.

I couldn't understand why she just didn't say that initially. Her response was that she was ashamed and she feels as if I am being denied another opportunity due to her health. What I told her is I need reassurance that she won't have a problem with me going for those periods of time, once her health improves.

What most frustrated me about the entire incident was that it was difficult to talk to her about my desire to go. It is an opportunity, which will probably come again, but I felt hemmed in by the circumstances.

The disease and K's limitations do exercise the feeling of being trapped over me on occasion. The feeling surfaces when I think about what I've given up over the past 20 months; a trip to Hawaii to present a paper, some financial security, the loss of my partner for periods of time, the stress involved in caring for someone. All of that takes a toll and continues to take a toll. I'm not angry, but it makes me sad when I think about it.

I got angry that she wouldn't talk about the possibility of my leaving. Her face cl0sed down and I could tell that she was fighting to hold in the rage, in the form of dysphoric mania. I asked that she reassure me that it wouldn't always be so, because I would feel too trapped by the relationship if that were the case. At that, she angrily told me to just go. That wasn't the right answer either.

I can accept that now is not the right time. She's come a very long way in the past two months, but I can understand her fear if the household were disrupted. But I struggle with the idea that I will never be able to go off exploring on my own.

The argument exhausted us. K promptly fell asleep on the couch and I wasn't able to even think clearly. We did make it through and the whole thing was only 30 minutes long, but the day to day management of bipolar is still right there in our faces.

I want bipolar to go away, but that's a childish wish.


At 5:05 PM, Blogger blondzila said...

We're entitled to our childish wishes. As the saying goes: if wishes were fishes, we'd all cast nets. And you've a lot on your shoulders. Makes me think about my own partner and what he bears, usually in silence. But to look at the glass as half full, it would seem that some progress has been made in the past year, however incremental. That is a good thing, no?


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